Gertrude, Art Piece # 57 Renovation


Creating an art piece from scratch is an exhilarating experience; choosing to reinvent it is even more stimulating. A project I once called  Courthouse Friends # 12 of 14 was the latest item to be transformed. Today’s journal entry will address her butterfly moment.

Original Appearance:

I have a tub filled with ugly quilt blocks; this item was created from one of those blocks. Typically the first step in reclaiming a block is to slice it into strips or sections. The strips are then reorganized until a pleasing arrangement is achieved.

To these reinvented strips a white border was added. Surrounding that border is a batik with leopard-like spots. The spots mimicked the design of the small lilac strip in the center of the quilt. The spots almost appear to dance around the perimeter.

The Beginning:

Early in 2020 I decided to reinvent a number of my art pieces and this was one of the specimens I tackled. To begin the task I removed the facings surrounding the outer edges. Next I added two new borders using a light grey and a multi-colored print fabric.


With the functional tasks complete I turned my focus to the embellishments. The previous version, of this art quilt, had been assigned an identity that recognized its origin…a court house square block. Since I had decided to refurbish the fiber art piece I saw no reason to maintain that existence. As I studied the composition I discovered the image of a bird. This revelation paved the path for my next steps.

Let’s Make That Happen:

To turn the pieced center into a bird I began by stitching a row of dark blue thread around the perimeter. Next I added feathers using one of my favorite stitches, the drizzle stitch. A variety of thread colors, many of which were already incorporated in the fabrics, were used to create the spiral-like protrusions; their presence gives the bird a playful appearance.

Continuing on with the embellishments I echoed around the edges of the white fabric with thread. The leopard-like border was given rows of wonky x’s and sporadically placed grey French knots. In the grey, I added a single row of running stitch. The very last embellishment this lady received was her beautiful, two-tone blue eye.

New Name:

With the amazing renovation just completed it seemed only natural to assign the lovely lady a new name. Her playful nature inspired me to call her Gertrude. I have a second project with similar elements which will be shared in a future post. These two snazzy birds, when lined up correctly will face each other. Gertrude’s sister is known as Trudy. Keep an eye out for Trudy’s debut.

This is Gertrude.

Gertrude, AP 57
Gertrude, Art Piece # 57

Isn’t she sweet!

Thank You:

I would love to hear your thoughts! Thank you for stopping by! I look forward to our next adventure.

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